Welcome to the latest edition of the Best of Suffolk Tried and Tested blog series, featuring Holly Lodge – an elegant, detached, pet-friendly Aldeburgh holiday home with beautiful garden, just a short walk to the high street and beach.
In this edition, our Director of Operations Tim and his family, plus their friends the Thompsons enjoyed a stormy weekend in Aldeburgh, staying at Holly Lodge. The two families consisted of four adults, five children and one dog, who got together for a Suffolk weekend in early spring.
Their home for the weekend was the ultra well-equipped Holly Lodge. The sleeps ten substantial house dates back to the early 1900s, comes with an incredibly generous garden and yet is only a short walk to the beach and town centre.
To show these #TriedandTested stays truly show all aspects of a real family holiday to Suffolk, the Ripman and Thompson contingent arrived in Aldeburgh in the pitch black as a storm hit the Suffolk coast! With no electricity in all of Aldeburgh, find out how their weekend plans changed, what they did and how they spent their time in this unique edition of #TriedandTested
Holly Lodge, Aldeburgh
Holly Lodge is an elegant, detached, pet-friendly holiday home with beautiful garden in a wonderful elevated position above the picturesque town of Aldeburgh, just a short walk to the high street and beach. This spacious, period house has been restored and furnished to an extremely high standard, retaining many original features.
The beautiful enclosed and landscaped private southwest facing rear garden is a huge plus and a rarity in Aldeburgh. The drive is fully fenced and has mature herbaceous borders, shrubs and holly trees from which the house name is derived! The rear garden is secured by gates at both sides.
The bi-fold doors from the dining area open onto a large terrace of Indian Sandstone where guests can relax and enjoy entertaining in the open air with a table, chairs and BBQ provided whilst keeping an eye on little guests who are sure to enjoy the playhouse.
Guests are welcomed into a lobby with door to a hall giving access to the first floor, the bedroom on the ground floor, the library and the spacious open-plan living/kitchen/dining room – a great place for people to socialise with ample seating for ten guests, and French doors opening to the patio and garden beyond.
Accommodation on the split level first floor comprises the generous master bedroom with super king bed and en suite bathroom; a double with king size bed and en suite shower room; super king zip and link, giving the option of twin or double bed, with en suite shower room; and one further double room with zip and link beds, close to the family bathroom.
With five bedrooms, five shower/bathrooms and two sitting rooms the house is ideally suited to two families or groups of friends, just like the Ripmans and the Thompsons!
Location, Location, Location!
Aldeburgh has an enviable reputation for its position on East Suffolk’s coastline and it’s cultural history with a range of activities including the Annual Festival for Music, art exhibitions, independent cinema, literary and poetry festivals.
This incredible self-catering Aldeburgh holiday house is located just a couple of minutes from the beach and the excellent range of restaurants, cafes, pubs and diverse range of shops on Aldeburgh High Street. There are stunning sea and landscapes to be enjoyed on walks around the lowland marsh, heathland and the coastal path to Thorpeness with opportunities for sailing, golfing and cycling locally. Fresh fish can be bought from the fish huts along the beach.
The first impressions of Holly Lodge were somewhat impaired by the lack of electricity! With one family arriving from London and another from the far side of Suffolk, it was already dark by check-in. This, coupled with a storm which hit the east coast for the whole weekend and a power cut meant the arrival wasn’t ideal! However, both parties arrived safely and settled into the sitting room with the cosy fire lit.
Holly Lodge was easy to find thanks to the trusty Best of Suffolk arrival details. We were able to unload and get the keys, even in the darkness! Unable to capture the usual ‘welcome pack’ of wine and goodies in pitch black, you’ll have to take our word for it!
A Change of Plan
The plan that evening for the Ripmans and Thompsons was to head to the Regatta Restaurant on Aldeburgh’s bustling High Street. However, with no electricity in the whole of Aldeburgh, that plan sadly had to be soon abandoned!
With both families safely inside, Tim headed to the garage at Snape in search of supplies. Extra torches, logs and candles were easily secured and the pubs in Snape and Thorpeness were open. The area had a wonderful feeling of ‘coming together during challenging times’ as everyone rallied round to help each other out.
Back to Normality
Within a few hours the electricity had come back on and normality was resumed, just in time for bed!
At Holly Lodge, there really is more than enough room for everyone! The five bedrooms are made up of a super king, a king, a double and two super king zip and link beds which can be made into twin beds. With five bedrooms, five shower/bathrooms and two sitting rooms the house is ideally suited to two families or groups of friends.
After a very comfortable night’s sleep, the two families awoke in wonderful Aldeburgh and decided the best way to start the day was with a spot of breakfast around the dining table in the kitchen.
Across the two families, the children ranged from 18 months to 10 years and were incredibly well-catered for.
Not only was there a piano, which the children thoroughly enjoyed playing on, but there’s also a host of toys to enjoy.
Dedicated Play House
Even better, the dedicated play house in the garden gives the children an incredible space to play and use their imagination whilst on holiday.
A Dip in the Sea
After breakfast, it was time to take Sky out for a walk on the beach.
Easily reached within a few minutes walk from Holly Lodge, there were also a few brave sea swimmers taking a dip!
Time for a Run
The wonderful thing about staying in Aldeburgh is that you can easily reach Thorpeness on foot. The coastal path makes for a challenging 5K, and Tim, Leo and Sky decided to take on that challenge!
The route consisted of the coastal path, past the famous ‘Scallop’ sculpture by Maggi Hambling, and into Thorpeness.
Once in the charming coastal village, the route took them past the golf club, the ‘House in the Clouds’ and to the finishing point of The Dolphin pub.
Whilst Tim, Leo and Sky took the more active approach, the rest of the family opted for a leisurely stroll to Thorpeness along the coastal path.
The children loved the ability to climb and roam, enjoying the space and fresh sea air. The party walked past the fish huts on Aldeburgh beach and had the opportunity to sample some local seafood delicacies!
The majority of the path is also pushchair friendly, meaning little Bear could come along for the ride too! Please note, the last section of the path is not pushchair friendly as it turns into pebbles. Thankfully there were enough volunteers in the party to help with Bear and the pushchair.
The Dolphin, Thorpeness
After all that walking and fresh sea air, it was soon time for lunch. The group headed to The Dolphin, a popular pub in Thorpeness serving a variety of tasty dishes including light bites, breakfasts and roast dinners.
The two families were joined by friends and the table of twelve received a delicious lunch and excellent service.
A Cosy Open Fire
After lunch, the two families headed back to the warmth and comfort of Holly Lodge.
The children enjoyed curling up on the sofa and chilling out watching a little bit of well-deserved TV, and the fire was lit.
We think Sky enjoyed it the most!
Before long, their thoughts soon turned to what was on the menu for dinner! Earlier that day, Tim had called into Salter and King on Aldeburgh High street. The family butcher can provide you with a variety of meats from steaks to BBQ food to a joint for roasting. Even better, returning Best of Suffolk guests get a special offer in Salter and King as part of the Rewards Club.
Well Equipped Kitchen
The fully-equipped kitchen was an absolute dream to cook in and made cooking steaks for the whole family an enjoyable experience thanks to the open plan kitchen dining area and socialising space.
A key part of any holiday is getting the family together around the table, and Holly Lodge certainly made that an enjoyable experience for all.
It wouldn’t be a family holiday without a games night! After tea the games provided at Holly Lodge were put to the test and enjoyed by all, adults and children alike!
Time to Say Goodbye
After a great night’s sleep, it was time to check out.
There was just enough time for one last walk on the beach for Sky and Bear. You don’t need sunshine and perfect weather to enjoy a trip to Aldeburgh!
If I Had More Time, I Would…
…Enjoy the Garden at Holly Lodge.
One of the biggest features of Holly Lodge is the incredible garden. Enjoyable for adults, children, and dogs alike, this would make a fantastic entertaining space for a BBQ or dining al fresco in the warmer weather.
…Eat at Regatta Restaurant.
Sadly we couldn’t make our reservation at Regatta Restaurant in Aldeburgh as the storm had other ideas! We would love the opportunity to go back and eat some of their delicious food.
…Bring More Friends!
Holly Lodge sleeps 10 comfortably and we had a spare bedroom we didn’t use between the two families. There’s a ground floor bedroom which meant those who prefer everything on one level, like grandparents, could have enjoyed the break too!
The Verdict: Holly Lodge
Absolutely ideal for a group or two families to enjoy all that Aldeburgh has to offer in comfort and style. Particularly well-equipped for families, the piano, games and play house in the garden means children are more than welcome. The large enclosed garden is a real rarity in Aldeburgh and provides yet more space for children and dogs to enjoy.
Look no further for that large family getaway to the coast. Take a look at the availability and pricing for Holly Lodge today.